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What a Toothache Can Mean

October 19, 2016
Posted By: Jason Rogers, DDS
Woman with Toothache | Dentist Glenview IL

Even if you are diligent about maintaining good oral care, you might still experience the discomfort of a toothache at some point in your life. Not even the most diligent brushing and flossing, or even regular trips to the dentist, can mean you are immune.

If you are experiencing a toothache, you are probably wondering what might be the cause of that nagging pain. It could be a cavity, but there are other possibilities as well. Let’s take a look at what your toothache might be telling you. It might be time for a visit to your dentist in Glenview, IL.

Sensitive Teeth

Sometimes you might feel sharp pain when drinking or eating hot or cold foods, and this could mean a cavity—or it could mean that you have sensitive teeth. The causes of sensitive teeth can often be gum recession or thinning of the tooth enamel. Whatever the culprit, it is worth a trip to the dentist to find out the cause of the problem.

In the meantime, however, you can try a toothpaste that is designed for sensitive teeth, as well as a soft-bristled toothbrush. This will help ease your symptoms while you wait to see your dentist in Glenview, IL.

Severe Toothaches

When toothaches are more severe, it could mean a cavity, or it could even mean you have a tooth that is cracked. If you still have your wisdom teeth, they can also cause toothaches—particularly if they are impacted. Another possibility is that you have an abscess or infection. In any case, a severe toothace means a call to the dentist is necessary immediately.

Tooth Pain That Is Unrelated to Your Teeth

Sometimes you are experiencing pain in what seems like your teeth but it is actually a sinus infection. If you feel pain in your upper teeth on both sides of your face, and you are experiencing nasal congestion and tenderness in the sinus area, this could be sinusitis. You’ll want to check with your doctor if you think this could be the cause of your tooth pain.

If the pain is in your jaw rather than your teeth, this could mean a temporomandibular disorder that is caused by a direct injury or trauma to the jaw, by tooth grinding (bruxism), or by arthritis or cancer that are impacting the jaw.

For any kind of tooth pain, it’s best to play it safe and talk to your dentist in Glenview, IL, as soon as possible. Dental pain is never normal!


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